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Body, We Need To Talk
I was so optimistic after this weekend.
No, I didn’t feel completely over this latest Crohn’s flare-up, but I was certain I was flying full-speed on the road to recovery.
But then yesterday happened, and now I’m all, “WTF, body? What’s your deal, you piece of crap?”
I know, I should speak more kindly to my body and I should appreciate it for all it does and its strength and blah blah blah.
I’m annoyed and I’m frustrated.
So today we’re going to talk about that! Woo!
Yes, I am currently convinced my body is out to get me.
You see, I’m trying to treat it right. I’m giving it exercise without pushing it too hard, and I’m resting often. I’m trying to give my body more of the sleep it seems to want, and I’m pumping it with nutrients, both in easily-digestible juice form and sorry-but-you-have-to-chew-this form.
Most importantly, I’ve given up on all forms of stress. They’re just gone. I’m spending quality time with people I love and who make me happy, and I’m ditching the things that irritate me. Bubbly people only.
I’m trying to do everything “right,” and I’ve got a nice little list of new doctors to call today so I can start seeing someone new and nice.
But until then, I’m on my own, and I’m doing my best — but yesterday my body seemed to want to tell me that “my best” is simply not good enough. Because it revolted. And it has continued to revolt.
I don’t know what’s going on right now. I still think the Crohn’s is on its way out — I can pretty much tell based on where the pain in my stomach is located and what’s happening in the bathroom — but I’m still experiencing a decent amount of discomfort.
I felt sort of weird yesterday morning, but figured it was nothing. My stomach hurt, but I expected it to pass, honestly, after a trip or two to the bathroom.
That didn’t happen, though.
I didn’t eat anything crazy during the day and kept my meals pretty basic and nutrient-dense.
Still, by 5 PM I was practically keeling over in pain at my desk, and not the Crohn’s pain I’m used to, but a different kind of pain.
Hmmmm how to describe this for you?
OK, pretend you have a little bit of Crohn’s left in you, and then you eat a really really really really huge meal, so you’re all bloated, and then your stomach starts to hang over your pants, and then you sort of feel like you’re going to throw up, and you feel really full, and then you get awful cramps, and then someone kicks you in the stomach.
That’s kind of how it feels.
Last night I thought about going for a little bike ride.
I thought about doing at-home yoga.
I thought about cleaning, doing laundry, putting the dishes away or doing anything remotely productive.
Instead, I was chained to the couch, watching a cool thunderstorm roll in while basking in a state of pathetic little misery.
The extent of my nighttime physical activity was getting off the couch and walking over to the window to see if it was, in fact, raining, or if the loud sounds I heard meant something in my apartment was about to blow up.
All I wanted to do this morning was run. I rested yesterday so I could run hard today. I’ve been dying to do speedwork — it’s been months since I’ve pushed my pace — and this morning was going to be my glorious return to the Reservoir, which is my favorite place to attempt speedy laps.
But I was up all night, doing the “tossing, turning and waking up Brian with frequent trips to the bathroom” thing, and at 5 AM I knew a run was not going to happen. There was no way my stomach would have been able to handle it.
I have a bike!
And even when my stomach is unsettled and bratty (oh good joke, my stomach matches my personality today, ha ha ha be nice), I can still seem to straddle a bike just fine.
Look! There’s the positivity I know and love!
I woke Brian up, and I think he’s probably more in love with me today than ever before, and we went to Central Park for a ride. It wasn’t long, it wasn’t fast and it certainly wasn’t the same kind of workout I get (and crave) from running, but it was still something and I still got to be outside for an hour.
Each time I hit a little bump, my stomach felt gross, and at one point I actually thought I might vomit. That would’ve been cool — puking from a bike while going full-speed ahead. I would have made a ton of friends in the park I bet. I kept it in, though. I’m fine.
Toward the end of the ride, I was cruising up Cat Hill, feeling pretty good, when this cute girl rode up next to me. She had the fancy bike outfit on, and she had a hot little body.
I made it my goal not to see her again.
I wanted — OK, I needed — a win this morning. So I pushed.
I pushed up the hill, and instead of recovering at the top and letting myself slow down, I kept pushing. I could hear her gears clicking right behind me, so I pushed harder.
And then I was at Engineers’ Gate, where I finish my ride.
Eat my dust, hot girl.
So that felt good. I was happy about it.
Back to my buried point: My body does not seem to want to get better, and that is kind of irritating. I’m not stupid and I don’t expect to be magically cured in a matter of days. I’m just a little frustrated that I seemed to be getting better over the weekend, and now I’m a few steps back, and the pain is one I’m not used to. I was so annoyed getting dressed this morning because I felt like my stomach was sticking out 12 feet in front of me and the thought of wearing anything but sweatpants was discouraging.
Maybe I’m just bloated.
Maybe I’m lactose intolerant.
Maybe I’m very dramatic.
So now I’m ready to work, I’m wearing a big wide belt on a very loose notch and I’m hoping that with some hydration and some big deep breaths, I will cure all the ailments.
Yes, I’m planning to get a medical degree. It’s clear that’s what I was meant to do in life.
And hey, body, I know I’ve put you through Hell and I’ve worked you hard and in the past I haven’t given you many breaks. I know I don’t foam roll you enough, and I know I let you get really really really really inflexible after all those years of dancing and doing splits and actually being able to touch your toes. I know I expect a lot from you, and I know I put pressure on you every day. But listen, I’ll ease up if you promise to cooperate. Let’s work as a team. Best friends? Awesome!
THIS IS A FUN GAME: Anything you’d like to tell your body today?